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mistle thrush
mistletoe cactus
mistletoe family
mistletoe fig
mistletoe rubber plant
mistletoe thrush

Mistletoe definitions

Webster's 1828 Dictionary

MIST'LIKE, a. Resembling mist.

WordNet (r) 3.0 (2005)

1: American plants closely resembling Old World mistletoe [syn: mistletoe, false mistletoe]
2: Old World parasitic shrub having branching greenish stems with leathery leaves and waxy white glutinous berries; the traditional mistletoe of Christmas [syn: mistletoe, Viscum album, Old World mistletoe]
3: shrub of central and southeastern Europe; partially parasitic on beeches, chestnuts and oaks [syn: mistletoe, Loranthus europaeus]

Merriam Webster's

noun Etymology: Middle English mistilto, from Old English mistelt?n, from mistel mistletoe + t?n twig; akin to Old High German & Old Saxon mistil mistletoe and to Old High German zein twig Date: before 12th century a European semiparasitic green shrub (Viscum album of the family Loranthaceae, the mistletoe family) with thick leaves, small yellowish flowers, and waxy-white glutinous berries; broadly any of various plants of the mistletoe family (as of an American genus Phoradendron) resembling the true mistletoe

Britannica Concise

Any of many species of semiparasitic green plants of the families Loranthaceae and Viscaceae, especially those of the genera Viscum, Phoradendron, and Arceuthobium, all members of the Viscaceae family.V. album, the traditional mistletoe of literature and Christmas celebrations, is found throughout Eurasia. This yellowish evergreen bush (2-3 ft, or 0.6-0.9 m, long) droops on the branch of a host tree. The thickly crowded, forking branches bear small leathery leaves and yellowish flowers, which produce waxy-white berries containing poisonous pulp. A modified root penetrates the bark of the host tree and forms tubes through which water and nutrients pass from the host to the slow-growing but persistent parasite. The N. Amer. counterpart is P. serotinum. Mistletoe was formerly believed to have magical and medicinal powers, and kissing under hanging mistletoe was said to lead inevitably to marriage.

Oxford Reference Dictionary

n. 1 a parasitic plant, Viscum album, growing on apple and other trees and bearing white glutinous berries in winter. 2 a similar plant, Phoradendron flavescens, native to N. America. Etymology: OE misteltan (as MISTLE (THRUSH), tan twig)

Webster's 1913 Dictionary

Mistletoe Mis"tle*toe, n. [AS. mistelt[=a]n; mistel mistletoe + t[=a]n twig. AS. mistel is akin of D., G., Dan. & Sw. mistel, OHG. mistil, Icel. mistilteinn; and AS. t[=a]n to D. teen, OHG. zein, Icel. teinn, Goth. tains. Cf. Missel.] (Bot.) A parasitic evergreen plant of Europe (Viscum album), bearing a glutinous fruit. When found upon the oak, where it is rare, it was an object of superstitious regard among the Druids. A bird lime is prepared from its fruit. [Written also misletoe, misseltoe, and mistleto.] --Lindley. Loudon. Note: The mistletoe of the United States is Phoradendron flavescens, having broader leaves than the European kind. In different regions various similar plants are called by this name.

Collin's Cobuild Dictionary

Mistletoe is a plant with pale berries that grows on the branches of some trees. Mistletoe is used in Britain and the United States as a Christmas decoration, and people often kiss under it.


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